On the March 13, 2021, SKEI Bangalore, embarked on yet another of their novel ventures as part of their 360-degree holistic education – A series of nature walks in the school premises planned throughout the year for the students and their families together. The number of participants were limited in consonance with the stringent COVID protocols and also to be able to provide individual attention to all the students and their family members who had enthusiastically participated in the walk.
Time and again educationalists have emphasised the importance of nature in the lives of children. In his book “The Last Child in the Woods; Saving our children from Nature deficit disorder”, Richard Louv, the American author and journalist reiterated the positive effects of bonding with nature for the children.
What better way to get away from the confines of their concrete homes and digital screens – to explore nature in their very own school. These walks are meant to be a great bonding activity for all, be it a tiny tot or an adult; who want to experience the magical magnificence of nature and learn to protect it as a human being.
Young environmentalists Gowri and Nikhil led the group on an urban nature trail that enthralled the participants.
One of the first thing observed on the nature walk was the discovery of the barbets, a beautiful tiny bird, hidden in the foliage. It generated a great deal of excitement as the group shifted their gaze from the ground to the canopy of the rain trees. Their sense of hearing gave way to listening intently to the various sounds of nature surrounding our daily lives. Adding fuel to their inquisitiveness, the assorted objects given to the students for relating in the trail aroused their natural curiosity which led them on a treasure hunt for mapping the unusual objects to the source.
The group was encouraged to get curious about the landscape and their relationship with it. They were teased into connecting with the nature using all their senses. They enjoyed varied activities that helped them become conscious of various sounds – animal cries, bird calls, the rustling of leaves, crackling of the dry twigs beneath their feet, the music the breeze made and even the tap-tap of tiny feet. They observed birds and insects closely, reaching out for the binoculars to take a peek. Along with the location and visual delight they were imparted the important education of symbiotic relationships and harmony in nature. The diversity of flora and fauna and along with the inhabitant birds, animals and insects form a homogenous ecosystem that needed to be appreciated and protected.
- It made them more observant and aware of their surroundings
- It awakened their tactile sense
- It brought out the nature lover in everyone
- It aroused their sensual response to natures’ bounty
- It made them conscious of the vibrant life all around and appreciate the beauty.
The walk culminated with the group longing for more as the elders narrated their childhood experiences with nature to the children. The members were amazed to get to feel nature so closely within the school premises. They welcomed nature discovery venture amidst Covid times as a very refreshing activity that rejuvenated their spirits and brought the family closer.Campus, News